The Lambeth Redress Scheme pays compensation to people who were abused or lived in fear of being abused while in Lambeth’s care as children. The scheme is for those who lived in or visited a Lambeth children’s home (including those at Shirley Oaks) or attended Shirley Oaks Primary School.

At Lambeth Council, we know that many former children’s homes residents will never be able to forgive us for their childhood experiences.

We are truly sorry for what happened to children in our care in the past and the consequences for their adult lives. While we cannot right those wrongs, we want everyone who is eligible for compensation to get it.

If this applies to you, you can apply no matter how long ago the abuse or fear of abuse happened.

So far:

  • more than 1,300 people have applied
  • we’ve paid out more than £19 million in compensation
  • we have provided independent, free and confidential counselling and specialist advice to applicants

Sections on this page (click to view)

Sections in this guide (click title to view)

1. Getting help with your application

You can get help with making your application – for example, from a friend, relative, support group or solicitor.

2. Types of 'redress'

You can get different types of compensation and support through the scheme. These are called ‘redress’. The types of redress are listed below.

After you send us your application and we’ve checked that you are eligible for redress under scheme, we’ll contact you or your solicitor.

We’ll also ask you which of the non-financial types of redress you’d like – for example, a written apology. These types of redress are optional: you do not have to ask for them if you do not want them.

Harm’s Way Payment

The Harm’s Way Payment is a payment of between £1,000 and £10,000.

You can apply if you lived in fear of being abused, neglected or suffering cruelty while living in a Lambeth children’s home (including Shirley Oaks).

The amount of payment depends on how long you lived at the children’s home.

If you lived in one of the four homes for children with disabilities, you will get a Harm’s Way payment of £10,000 no matter how long you spent there.

Individual Redress Payment

The Individual Redress Payment is a payment of up to £125,000.

You can apply if you suffered abuse or psychological injury as a child while you:

  • lived in or visited a Lambeth children’s home (including those at Shirley Oaks)
  • attended Shirley Oaks Primary School

The amount of payment depends on:

  • how severe the abuse was
  • the harm it caused you
  • whether you’ll need to pay for any recommended medical or psychological treatment
  • whether you’ll need to pay for things like travelling to a medical assessment when making your application

You can apply for both payments

If you’re eligible, you can apply for both the Harm’s Way Payment and Individual Redress Payment. We would pay your Harm’s Way Payment first.

A written apology from Lambeth Council

We would like to apologise personally to everyone who suffered or feared harm in our children's homes. If you would like it, you can ask for a formal written apology from the council.

The apology will:

  • acknowledge what happened to you
  • accept that it was Lambeth Council’s fault
  • say what we’ve done to make sure it does not happen again

A meeting with someone senior from the council

You can also ask to meet with a senior person from Lambeth Council.

This is to give you the chance to tell the council in person what you think and feel about what happened to you.

It’s also a chance to hear what the council has to say about it.

Counselling

If you would like it there is free and confidential counselling available. Anyone who lived in or visited a Lambeth children’s home (including those at Shirley Oaks) or attended Shirley Oaks Primary School is eligible for counselling

Counselling involves a trained therapist listening to you. It can help you find ways to deal with emotional issues.

The counselling is personal to your needs and will be available close to where you live.

You can contact the redress team to arrange counselling at any time. The counselling will be arranged once the team has confirmed you are eligible for the scheme. You do not need to have completed an application to access it.

Specialist advice

You can also ask to get specialist advice, support and assistance to help you get access to:

  • housing
  • welfare benefits
  • further education
  • work

3. What happens to your personal data

We treat all the information and personal data you give us as confidential.

This means we only use your information to deal with your application in these ways:

  • to make redress application decisions
  • to prevent fraud
  • to tell the Department of Work and Pensions that we have made a payment to you
  • to produce statistics and reports, for example, about the numbers of applicants or where they live - data is anonymised where possible

We will not pass on any information that you give us to any organisation except for the reasons above or if:

4. Why we set up the scheme

Lambeth Council set up the scheme because we want to take responsibility for the failure to adequately protect children in council care from the 1930s until the 1990s.

The scheme is the first of its kind in the country. We set it up after talking to abuse survivors and their legal advisors.

5. How the scheme is funded

The government has given us permission to borrow money to fund the costs of the scheme.

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